Aggregate Industries, a unit of Holcim has won permission from the European Commission to buy Foster Yeoman’s operations for markets outside Britain, the EU executive announced on Thursday.
But the Commission referred Holcim’s purchase of the privately held UK building materials group for markets inside Britain to Britain’s Office of Fair Trading (OFT).
"The Commission believes that the OFT is best placed to assess the competitive impact of the case on the heavy building materials markets in the UK, as this will require the investigation of local (sub-) markets and supply relations," the Commission said in a statement.
The Commission said the OFT had expertise because of recent similar investigations.
Holcim, did not give a price for the deal, though at the time it was announced, analysts estimated the value at between SwFr600m and SwFr900m (US$486.2m).
Foster Yeoman had sales of about UK£224m in the financial year ending May 27, 2005.